She awakes suddenly as a door in the house slams shut. She hates waking up so abruptly, it always puts her in a grumpy mood. Her tiny hands rub her eyes, trying to see straight. Reaching around for her glasses so the world can cease to be blurry for a while. The room is brightly lit and she wonders how long she has slept for. The nights have been long since she has had no one to hold her until she falls asleep, but she recently picked up a kitten at the pound so she could have some sort of companion. Unfortunately, it seems to be a stubborn little kitty and he never wants to lay by her for long at night, much like the man she used to share the bed with. She attempted to pet the soft fur of the kitten, but he scratches her before she even gets close, so she climbs off of bed and onto the cold hardwood floor and decides to go make a cup of coffee. The house is silent and she is assuming all of her roommates have already been long gone, going through their usual, unsatisfying routines. The silence is always a little bit frightening and a little bit comforting and this morning it is one of comfort. The only noise  she hears is the coffee brewing and her fingers impatiently tapping on the countertop. She always seems to be waiting for something.

 

As she sips her coffee (in which she added just the right amount of cream and sugar) she skims through one of the magazines her roommates have left on the table. Nothing catches her interest, but she tries to focus anyway. She knows that if she doesn’t have something tangible in front of her to look at her mind will kick into gear and the rest of her day will be spent thinking, thinking, thinking of the man who has left for good. It has been nearly three weeks since she last saw him, but it feels like just yesterday when she kissed him. She can practically feel the scruff on his face on her fingertips. No, no, girl, focus on the things you are touching now. The smoothness of the magazine paper, the warm coffee cup; anything but the memory of his scruff. The door has been opened and she knows she won’t be able to stop thinking about him, but she knows that she can’t spend another day in her room, sprawled across the bed, watching the saddest movies she can find. She needs to do something else; she cannot let the memory of him consume her. He has consumed her for far too long now.

 

The thought of sitting still for another day is almost sickening to her now. She used to be such a happy girl, this one, until she fell in love. She never thought she would see the day that she would be vulnerable for another human being, but it came and went faster than she could have dreamed. She needs to get back to her happy place, she needs to go and find that place, or any place without him. His memory, his scent, his touch, lingers all around her. She knows she should hate feeling the way that she does and she does want to get better, but it is so hard for her to grasp the reality of what happened. She can’t even remember the details anymore, she can only think of how much he had changed her. She decides it is time to get off of the chair and she walks the cold floor the way back to her room. For the first time in three weeks, she decides she has to make herself presentable and go back into the world. Though she doesn’t know what awaits her, she knows she has to face reality.

 

She gets into her favorite dress and the shoes to match, but before she heads out of the door she leaves her kitten some food. She wonders if today is the day she will finally decide on a name for him, but since she still is unsure, she continues to call him “Kitty.” The house, still bright and silent, creaks as she makes her way out of the front door. The air feels good; it is cold, but not windy. She thinks she sees him out of the corner of her eye and her heart sinks instantly to her stomach. She closes her eyes for a moment, but when she opens them there is no one there. Just wishful thinking, as always. She feels the urge to run back inside and crawl into her haven, but she keeps on moving forward down the street. She keeps on moving forward.

 

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